Most ‘Eligible’ British Airways Aircraft Will Have WiFi In A Year

Many will be preparing for the new year by drafting a list of resolutions for 2020. British Airways was no different, releasing a list of 20 resolutions for 2020. One of these involves the rollout of WiFi to the majority of its aircraft by the end of 2020.

British Airways, WiFi, Internet
British Airways will install WiFi on a majority of eligible aircraft next year. Photo: British Airways

In-flight WiFi is increasingly important when it comes to attracting customers. In fact, in a 2018 survey by Inmarsat 67% of passengers are more likely to rebook with an airline if it offers WiFi. This figure was even more significant if you only look at business travellers. This is clearly something that British Airways is aware of, as it looks to up its WiFi availability.

Which British Airways aircraft currently offer WiFi?

In August, we took a look at British Airways’ WiFi offering and compared it to the rival airline, Virgin Atlantic. Only around 30% of British Airways’ short-haul fleet was equipped with WiFi connections. This includes three Airbus A319s, 34 Airbus A320s, four Airbus A320neos, and six Airbus A321s.

Taking a look at the long haul fleet, we saw that 64% of the airline’s long-distance fleet now has WiFi enabled. Of course, since then, the airline has received three more Airbus A350s with WiFi enabled.

British Airways, WiFi, Internet
WiFi is a key driver of passenger loyalty according to Inmarsat. Photo: British Airways

What was in British Airway’s resolution

British Airways today released a list of 20 new years’ resolutions to achieve by the end of 2020. Regarding the installation of wireless internet, the carrier said:

The majority of eligible aircraft will be WiFi ready by the end of 2020.

The airline hasn’t gone into exactly what number “the majority” converts to. Additionally, the airline didn’t specify which aircraft are eligible. However, we can have a good guess.

According to the users over at FlyerTalk, 18 long-haul and 27 short-haul aircraft won’t be receiving WiFi. This includes the Boeing 747 aircraft which are currently without WiFi. These aircraft will also not receive the new Club Suite seat as they are due to retired in the coming years. The other long-haul aircraft not set to receive retrofitted WiFi are the airline’s three Boeing 777-200 aircraft. These are also due to be replaced.

British Airways, WiFi, Internet
All of the airline’s A350’s are equipped with WiFi. Photo: British Airways

On the short-haul side of the fleet, 27 aircraft will not be receiving a WiFi retrofit. These are all Airbus A319s. As a result, this leaves 64 short-haul aircraft and 24 long-haul aircraft, a total of 88, still in need of WiFi. A total of 221 aircraft will receive or have already received WiFi capabilities. As such, the goal has already been met, even if British Airways were to install no WiFi in 2020.

Have you flown on a British Airways aircraft with WiFi? Did you notice the difference? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.